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The Lullaby Illusion details the harrowing personal journey of a young American woman facing seemingly insurmountable situations while living in the Middle East and Europe.After miscarriages and the loss of a child in childbirth on the island of Cyprus, Susan seeks solace by creating art, and recording her vivid dreams. Through difficult life changes -- Cyprus's bloody couThe Lullaby Illusion details the harrowing personal journey of a young American woman facing seemingly insurmountable situations while living in the Middle East and Europe.After miscarriages and the loss of a child in childbirth on the island of Cyprus, Susan seeks solace by creating art, and recording her vivid dreams. Through difficult life changes -- Cyprus's bloody coup and war in 1974, a rescue from a sinking ship in the Indian Ocean, learning of her husband s secret life, and surviving his deadly assault in Belgium -- she discovers her ticking clock is not the child she has failed to produce, but rather the creative potential with which she can create a new life....

Title : The Lullaby Illusion: A Journey of Awakening
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780939217885
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 358 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Lullaby Illusion: A Journey of Awakening Reviews

  • Beth Haslam
    2018-11-22 05:18

    This skilfully written memoir is a complex web containing threads of intrigue, life threatening incidents and moments of great poignancy and humour.Susan Joyce begins by telling of her marriage to a man who she suspects might be leading a double life – one that is filled with mystery and sinister purpose. She is young and naïve and copes with his strange behaviour, but is deeply disturbed by his secrecy.His job causes them to move locations, one of which is to Cyprus. Susan describes the beauty of the country, her lifestyle and development of friendships within the local and expatriate communities. There is so much that seems idyllic there until the moment when the war breaks out. I was gripped as I re-lived, through her eyes, the political and combative events that transpired. The traumas, accounts of human suffering and survival are vivid and incredibly moving. Susan also tells us about her personal trials and successes. She recounts the physical and emotional agonies of multiple miscarriages, the bonds and losses of dear friends, and then the significance of her dreams. Through her mixed experiences she begins to realise and celebrate her artistic talent, her confidence and self-belief. There are so many twists and turns to this compelling story that, at times, it read more like an espionage thriller than a memoir. The combination of her powers of description, and quality of writing made this a clear five star rating for me.

  • Cherie Magnus
    2018-11-17 02:11

    Born in Los Angeles, children's book author Susan Joyce is a creative dreamer and traveler, who shares the amazing story of her adventurous life in her new memoir.Peopled with many characters, some famous--there's even an Elvis sighting--this memoir recounts the terrifying events of a military coup and Turkish invasion in Cyprus in 1974 on the foreigners and expats who were stranded there.What would it be like to be caught in the middle of a war that wasn't even yours? Joyce had a beautiful life until she had to abandon her lovely home in the paradise that was the island of Cyprus and become a border refugee dodging bullets flying overhead and fire spreading through the refugee camp. The refugees, caught between the Greeks and the Turks, were helped by UN soldiers and were airlifted by helicopter to a British ship. Joyce went on to live in Europe, but later on she had to be rescued from a boat in the Indian Ocean. A very wild ride indeed!Dreams, news reports, conversations, travel descriptions, and lots of conversations blend together to give a picture of the dramatic events at a time when the author was focused on her wish to have a baby after many miscarriages and a tragic stillbirth, and her disintegrating marriage and suspicion that her husband of thirteen years was a spy.Her awakening comes from the realization that she cannot have a baby, and she needs to use her powers of creation in another way, which she does very successfully. Once safe in Europe, giving up on her dream to bear a child, she reinvents herself as an artist as she continues to travel the world.

  • Fran Macilvey
    2018-12-14 22:11

    'The Lullaby Illusion' by Susan JoyceI initially swithered a bit about this book, unsure. Swither is a Scots word, meaning, to move this way and that. But I swither no more! Susan's adventures would be great as a swashbuckler movie, though I doubt that anyone would really believe them. How any one woman can get into so many scrapes, get entangled with shady characters, spies, war, high seas adventures and the like, and come out of them and thrive, makes absorbing reading. In the course of being thoroughly entertained I have learned a few sobering truths about war, what makes it, how it is perpetuated and why. I knew nothing about Cyprus, apart from the line across the middle. Now I know more. One day, I hope that Susan publishes her research on the subject. I am especially fond of the other-world aspects, the metaphysical dimensions of the tale. I have vivid dreams, which tell me to hold faith with higher truths. I listen, though not often enough. And I found myself so grateful for the tale of Susan's success, achieved in large part because she always had the wit to listen and follow her internal guidance. Doing so has evidently led the author through adventures unscathed, to a life of deep fulfilment and joy. That in itself is a message worth listening to. Thank you, Susan, for sharing your colourful experiences with us. Fran Macilvey, author, "Trapped: My Life With Cerebral Palsy"

  • John Searancke
    2018-11-19 04:01

    I confess to never having read a book quite like this before. It felt ever so slightly disjointed until I learned the rhythm and went along with the flow and storyline. And what a story Susan has to tell! Dreams and illusions there are aplenty, woven into the fabric of the tale, so that it almost comes alive in your hands. I learned so much of her personal tragedy in the Cyprus crisis (I myself was 31 at the time) and her life both before and afterwards. By the time that the Epilogue came around and detailed what had happened to all of her friends, I felt that I had got to know them all so well, and could shed a tear for her losses. This is a magical and moving book, written by an author who has demonstrably enjoyed her life to the full.John Searancke—Reviewer,Tenerife Island Connections

  • Joy
    2018-12-01 02:01

    There is a saying "the world is your oyster", suggesting the person is free to take any opportunity they choose, that life has to offer. Susan Joyce fully embraces the life opportunities that are presented to her. Without giving anything away, it is only the author’s belief in herself, and her ability to trust and act on her intuitive feelings that carries her through the great, the good, the sad, the fearful, the adverse and the indifferent. Would she have ever embarked on this journey had she known what life events awaited her when she met and within months, married Charles and together experienced living in various countries, absorbing new languages and cultures?The book is enjoyable on several levels through varying threads: single, married and separated life; living in new countries; experiencing a war, and Joyce’s esoteric spirituality conveyed in her dreams and journalling. Through self-awareness, this inevitably led the author to confront the possibility of lies in her world, then beginning to see her world more as it was, not as she presumed it to be. The more the author saw her world objectively, the wiser her choices became with her resulting actions having a positive impact on her life.The author’s lyrical writing style gives her work an intensity. Sometimes it is an inner emotional intensity, and at other times, an outward-looking evocation of time and place. This enables the creation of a form of beauty, not only of the fun and happy times but also from ugly or frightening events, especially those experienced during her time of living through the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus.I unreservedly recommend this book. It brought to mind Carl Jung and his belief that one does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious, to bring it into light. The author’s ability to examine and make sense of all her experiences, her willingness to share it honestly with her readers, is what elevates this book above most other memoir.

  • Jayne Hyatt
    2018-12-09 02:03

    I know Susan Joyce’s memoir, THE LULLABY ILLUSION, is non-fiction, yet it reads like fiction -- delivering all the tension and thrills one expects from a suspense novel. In fact, with the way it portrays the cold war era of the 1970s, along with its vivid descriptions of traveling through Europe and the Middle East, it reminded me of a Helen MacInnes cold war era suspense novel. The places, people and situations in this book are absorbing in the same way the situations and characters in a MacInnes novel are absorbing. I would say Ms. Joyce has led a very interesting life. I’m glad she’s chosen to share this part of it with us.Ms. Joyce employs a series of time switches in her memoir to help the reader understand and absorb the entire story, but the bulk of the action takes place in Europe in the seventies. It vividly chronicles her time spent in “paradise” (as the author refers to Cyprus) where she was living in 1974 during the Greek coup d’état and the Turkish invasion I was riveted as I read her harrowing and tense account of being caught between the warring factions. She was fortunate to survive.The heart of the story, though, is her reaction to the grim reality of coming to terms with betrayal by the person she should have been most able to trust, her husband. Was he a double agent? Did he have something to do with the war in Cyprus? Did she ever truly know him? In choosing how to react to these questions, and his betrayal, she finds herself paying attention to her dreams and intuition, which act as guides to finding self-fulfillment and reinventing herself both creatively and personally.Ultimately, this is a life-affirming story, as a good memoir should be. It shows how we can turn heartache into triumph. It all depends on how we choose to react. As I closed the book with a sigh of satisfaction, I found myself pondering how life gives us many opportunities to become who we really are, if we are wise enough to be paying attention.

  • Frank Kusy
    2018-11-25 01:17

    This is a wonderful, wonderful memoir - expertly told and with bags of incident and finely judged humour. Ms Joyce has a very vivid dream-life (keeps a dream diary, I do that!) and one night dreams that she was a wild pinto running free across the Arizona desert. Her friend asks if the horse said anything, and Susan quips ‘Neighed a lot!’ I also LOVED the birthday suit episode – won’t give too much away, but the ‘it didn’t need much pressing’ line had me in fits!Following a divorce, a series of miscarriages and a tragic still-birth, Ms Joyce realises that having children is not a guarantee of happiness – she achieves new fulfilment as a writer of children’s books…inspired by dream visits from a singing elephant! This is no ordinary singing elephant either, it sings in rhyme!“An elephant won’t forget you when you’re happy.An elephant won’t forget you when you’re sad.’Cause an elephant knows the secret is remembering it all—Learning from the good times, and the bad.”One gets the feeling that Ms Joyce has taken this to heart…her story recalls a good and comfortable life suddenly turned bad when the 1974 Cyprus coup forces her out of her paradise home – her “lullaby existence” - and into a hail of flying bullets. And that’s just the start of her troubled travels – both in her extended globetrotting in the real world (nearly drowned in the Indian Ocean!) and in the reflective travels of her dream world as she reflects on and learns to overcome each new challenge (including finding out her hubby is a spy!) with both courage and wisdom. ‘The Lullaby Illusion’ is an ode to the human spirit - a testament to a life lived fully and well and made strong by the experience.

  • Rebecca Hislop
    2018-11-26 04:04

    Susan Joyce’s ‘Lullaby Illusion’ is a truly fascinating memoir. One strand details her travels and life in Europe with remarkable descriptions and a conversational style that effortlessly draws the reader into her world. What an extraordinary and varied life she had. It was certainly touched with tragedy as she suffered numerous miscarriages and the trauma of a stillbirth. She was living in Cyprus at the time of the Greek Cypriot coup and subsequent invasion by the Turkish Army and was very lucky to escape with her life. She also realises that her husband Charles is leading a double life and finds herself in danger from him. However Susan somehow copes with this and emerges as a strong and self reliant woman building a new life as a successful artist. The second strand explores Susan’s ‘dream world’ and her very strong intuitive feelings which she has learnt to trust and which she knows guides her path. These are wonderfully interwoven into this amazing narrative showing that truth can be stranger and infinitely more action packed than fiction. At one point I realised I had tears running down my face reading about her dream sequence where she whispers ‘The Lullaby Illusion – life’s illusive song.’ It’s a truly moving memoir and one which I highly recommend. Worth every one of the 5 stars

  • Veronica
    2018-11-22 06:16

    The Lullaby Illusion: A Journey of Awakening by Susan Joyce, truly pulled on my heartstrings. I don't know what I was expecting when I first jumped into this one, but what I came out with was awe and amazement. So well written, impossible to put down, and truly left me pondering for hours after I finished reading it.This is a memoir, which is the type of novel that I enjoy reading most. You get a real feel of the author and the hardships she had to go through over the course of time. The story mainly focuses on the Turkish Invasion in Cyprus in 1974, the military coup and the foreigners and expats who were left behind there. Susan Joyce had a wonderful life, but she had to abandon it in order to become a border refugee. Eventually she ends up in Europe, but ends up having to be rescued there as well.There are so many aspects of this novel that go way beyond war. Joyce realizes she can't have children as well, so we get to see her struggle through that and how she copes with it. She wants to continue to travel, even after reaching Europe, and we watch as she makes that a reality as well.This storyline is not only heart wrenching, It's uplifting as well. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I admire Susan Joyce very much. This is one memoir worth reading!

  • Peri Hoskins
    2018-12-15 22:28

    I enjoyed reading Susan Joyce’s ‘The Lullaby Illusion’. I have very vague childhood memories of the conflict in Cyprus during 1974 and this memoir filled in some big gaps for me. I felt while reading the book this was a story that needed to be told and I am glad that Susan Joyce found the time, energy and tenacity to tell it. The author lived through a coup and a war and her story needed to be circulated so others may benefit from it. I particularly liked the descriptions of the coup and resulting war. I felt those descriptions rang true to life. I also enjoyed the many dream sequences. The importance of the author’s dreams, and dreams generally, emerge as a central theme that underpins this memoir. The entire memoir is infused with the author’s warm, positive and very feminine personality. Susan Joyce comes across as a multi-talented person – including a talented hostess, chef, writer and artist. I was also left with the feeling the author had a spiritual connection to the universe and a faith that made sure she was looked after even during the dark moments described in the memoir. This book is a really good read.

  • Pat Ellis
    2018-12-17 01:21

    Fab 'thumbs-up' from me. I was gripped by the Author's 'journey' during the 70s/80s - And I so admire her 'guts' - not only did she suffer the trauma of miscarriages and the awfully sad realisation that her baby was still-born; but, she never really knew what her then husband did for a living…hmmm. This Memoir covers a frightening time in Cyprus, the 1974 Coup when the Author, neighbours & friends have their lives in this paradise turned upside down - dodging bullets - hiding, escaping - will they get out - what's going to happen? The descriptions of her wonderful friends & the times she spent with them in Germany, Frankfurt, France, Cyprus, LA - totally engaging. The Author has vivid dreams which she captures in a dream journal - spooky at times - fate? who knows!. A talented Artist who turns things around and has some brilliant gallery art shows. I'm not one for giving too much away as I never can find the right words and don't wish to spoil this Memoir for others... I do highly recommend it - and I sincerely hope there will be another to take us readers further with Susan Joyce on what I believe is a remarkable, brave journey thus far.

  • Richard Klein
    2018-12-13 00:05

    The Lullaby Illusion is a wonderful and kaleidoscopic personal journey. Although Susan Joyce passes through gruesome moments: a miscarriage, life in the cross fire zone of the civil war in Cyprus, a marriage breakup where her husband was close to killing her and the loss of her best friend to AIDS, she paints these facts with gentle strokes as the artist she is in "real life" and creates a lovely picture out of them. What I most liked about the book was that, like a certain James with the same surname as herself, Susan's style is a stream of consciousness where she goes there and back in time involving the reader, not only in her interesting history but also in her psyche. To do this, she takes us into the realm of her dream life which, in her case, is a very powerful and mysterious tool with dealing with the hardships she finds on her way. Her smooth cruising above hard times, her inner equilibrium and her successes make the reader feel good about their existence. The author also shows an uplifting capacity for enjoying the best things in life such as true friendship and love and has the power to make everything and everyone she touches seem special. Definitely a five star.

  • Susan Navas
    2018-12-07 21:59

    Susan Joyce's incredible memoir follows her life through events that make this read more like fiction than fact. Written as a series of dialogues between Susan and various important friends and influencers, it is a compelling and very moving read as we travel backwards and forwards in time through the events described in the book. The book takes us through her escape from the war in Cyprus and a damaging marriage, the loss of her child and friends whom she loved. Susan Joyce emerges through it all and grows, influenced by her vivid and insightful dreams, into a woman I cannot help but admire. A highly recommended read!

  • Rosie Crawford
    2018-11-29 02:00

    This book kept me looking at my Atlas - truly a great travelogue and good story of Susan Joyce's journey as a person. Using several flashbacks, she tells the story of the overthrow of the government of Cyprus when she lived there with her husband in 1974. She does a great job of describing her harrowing time in the war zone and subsequent travels around the globe. After her escape from Cyprus, she needs to reinvent herself as her marriage unravels. It is an inspiring story of triumph against the odds. I think her success derives from approaching everything with a positive attitude and without fear.

  • E.J. Bauer
    2018-11-15 22:22

    I really wasn't sure what to expect when I started this book. I certainly didn't envisage being held captive by its pages until the last word was read. The author recounts her amazing adventures during her time in war torn Cyprus and juxtaposes her narrative with scenes from her later life when she moved to Germany. While much of the book read like an amazing action movie, the pages yield a rich mix of adventure, self discovery, and prescience. Her friends felt like my friends and I enjoyed every minute of her journey of awakening.

  • Lizzie Harwood
    2018-11-18 05:28

    I enjoyed the unique voice of the author in this memoir - it read almost like a play script with its reliance on dialogue and moving back and forth through time and place to cover and recover events through various lenses by the narrator. Susan Joyce's exuberance for life and upbeat humor kept me turning the pages and even though some elements didn't feel entirely wrapped up - the mystery of a certain ex's actual activities, for example - overall that didn't matter in the face of the bigger story of Joyce's awakening. A life-affirming, interesting read.

  • Tamer
    2018-12-15 05:09

    What a ride that was! The book is very well written and takes you on a wild journey of a woman who grows right before your eyes. I won't spoil the story but will tease you a bit; she survives the start of a war in Cyprus, miscarriages, and did I mention possibly a spy in her life? There is much more I won't discuss here but this is an artist on the inside with a character made of steel. This must be made into a movie and the screenwriter won't have to think much describing the scenes because of Susan's mastery of writing. I recommend this book unreservedly.

  • Linda Kovic-Skow
    2018-11-15 22:11

    From start to finish, Susan Joyce's Lullaby Illusion is vivid, incredible story about a life many of us can only imagine. I'm glad she found a way to recreate her life after a failed marriage with a secretive, abusive husband. I especially enjoyed her descriptions of the the incredible coop in Cyprus in 1974 - a firsthand experience most of us can only imagine from afar. Her writing style will have you racing to the end to see how things turn out.

  • Ann Patras
    2018-12-04 05:07

    An EXCELLENT read. A very fascinating and insightful book. Susan Joyce certainly had a lot to tell and told it wonderfully. Without spoiling it for future readers, I can say that I was brought to tears at the loss of one of the 'characters', who I had come to feel very close to. Lullaby Illusion is clearly a Five Star memoir.

  • Sarah Butfield
    2018-12-02 01:10

    This true account is told with honesty and integrity. The degree of detail in describing both the physical and psychological experiences is carefully done to enable the reader to not only understand, but also to create a level of engagement. An inspirational woman and an inspirational book.

  • RYCJ
    2018-11-30 01:14

    An opera is what this memoir reminds me of. Charles, for me, was the greatest mystery to uncurl, and the dialogue created a unique reading experience, in particular the stirring dreams weaved inside the larger story... an experience I happened to like, along with the epilogue.

  • Catherine
    2018-12-05 00:00

    Harrowing, touching and beautiful. I would like to read more of this author's work.

  • Sandra McKenna
    2018-12-02 02:19

    This is an amazing journey of highs and lows and all places in between.Superbly written, and absolutely riveting from beginning to end.What an incredible story!

  • Julie Haigh
    2018-11-29 22:20

    A Great Book. Wonderful.When I started this book it was keeping my interest easily yet it had a bit of a rambly quality. As Susan says in the book-that's it exactly-'scattered thoughts'. At the beginning we are in 2008, then flashing back to when she lived in Cyprus and back slightly later in Germany-yet it's easy to follow and has an exciting snappy style. I soon got into the structure of the book and it provided very interesting reading. It's written in quite a different style, refreshing, a conversational style, packing lots of points in. I've just read quite a long novel which was very detailed-I felt I was skimming through this one because the writing style is so quick and snappy, like meeting a friend you haven't seen for ages and getting so much news in as you feel you have to tell all you can in the limited time you're seeing them. Susan has lived in so many places, it's hard for me to keep up! Israel, Mexico, LA, Cyprus, Stuttgart etc. I like the format where each chapter tells where she is and the date. Page layout is very easy on the eye-spacing between the lines etc. Susan has visionary dreams-she even saw her husband Charles with another woman and could recognise her. I wonder does she see things in dreams just when bad things are going to happen? Or does Susan see good things too? Does she see us there with our kindles reading her book?! Susan tells of her miscarriages and the stillbirth of her baby, her divorce and then her husband wanting her back. Susan is caught up in a war while she lives in Cyprus. Tales of torture, frightening experiences, explosions very scary circumstances. Falling debris, huddled under stairs with neighbours then under the table. It all sounds absolutely terrifying. Windows shattering, paint dropping off walls, right in the thick of it all. I just can't imagine how terrible it was to have experienced all this. There are many radio bulletins included from those times. It made me so sad to hear the one about pets not being allowed to evacuate with their owners. A powerful and emotional chapter. Devastation and harrowing stories of people now left with nothing. Example of making do when you really have to eg. to keep warm when nothing with you. Many times I found myself exclaiming 'Oh God' whilst reading this- An American man is shot through the hand, Susan tells of conditions and inconveniences at the camp, eg. insects. Nothing to eat at camp for about two days and then UN brings hot soup for everyone. Susan later makes a name for herself as an artist having many exhibitions. Batik sounds very impressive. Red dots on several of her pictures as they've been sold yet Susan seems surprised and unassuming. The chapter where she goes to Capri makes lovely reading. Susan's sense of fun shows through the writing. Beautiful descriptions of the surroundings eg. when holidaying with Michael. Some very interesting and amusing items eg. where she had a dish at a restaurant-it's delicious but they can't understand what cut of meat it is: the waiter brings a chart of meat cuts and Susan can't believe what she's just eaten and enjoyed so much! How hard it must have been for her to hear of her sisters' next pregnancy and not one baby but twins when Susan had had so many miscarriages and a still birth. Such a positive outlook on life especially considering what she's been through. I got really immersed in this book. What's bad liver breath-re the dog Brownie? Does it mean he had liver failure? Or that his breath smelt like liver? Liver cooking or raw? I was shouting at the book at one point-Annoying! Just as it's getting interesting with some new male company for Susan-she flashes back to 1974!!!!! She really knows how to pace the book and keep the reader hooked. Terrible what they found there on returning to their town after the conflict. This memoir is not what I expected and that's what makes it all the more interesting. This memoir doesn't recount life from childhood-it alternates between the devastation of being caught up in a war zone in Cyprus and her time in Germany, meeting her husband, her struggles to have a baby, divorce, starting a new life. I thought I wasn't going to enjoy it once it flashed back to the war scenes-my own short-comings; I didn't really know anything about this conflict and thought I wouldn't follow things easily but I soon got into the style of Susan's memoir and liked the format. Different, refreshing, gripping. Lovely, rich detail. Still tinged with a bit of humour even though lots of difficult things in the book. Wonderful. The Epilogue really affected me, it rounded off Susan's memoir perfectly. Some very sad conclusions and I filled up reading this. Good things too. A great book. Just perfect.

  • Gisela Hausmann
    2018-11-20 05:15

    I meant to read this book for a while. Susan Joyce is a fellow award winner, who won in the category Non-Fiction - Travel, a genre that is very dear to me.Susan Joyce describes her book's story best when she writes,"... As a young woman I had set out to explore, to travel the world. The more I explored, the more I discovered myself. So much of life seemed to follow a serendipitous path of spiritual discovery...."And what a path it was. Married to Charles, a handsome fellow, who did business in the Middle East, she called Cyprus her home. Cyprus has often been described as a paradise and to Susan it was. Her worst problem is that even after a few miscarriages Charles still does not want to adopt. He seems to make becoming a father his life's goal. Susan gets pregnant again but the baby is stillborn. It is the beginning of the end of her marriage. Other than being inconsiderate Charles also has other flaws. During the famous overthrow of the Makarios government in July 1974 Susan finds out that her husband knows too much. Even though he has never served (to her knowledge), he can identify planes and weapons. Other people seem to suggest that Charles is a spy and his business trips are cover-ups for Lord knows what. Susan's riveting eyewitness account of the junta's attack is high drama. I was fascinated by it because I had never read an innocent bystander's story about a coup d'état. Susan describes in great detail her, her husband's, and her friends' attempt to hide, flee amidst failing electricity and occasionally failing phones, napalm attacks, bombing and shooting. It is a good thing that the Turks don't want to kill foreigners, because Susan gets to meet them too.I had spent three weeks in Cyprus in 1987, when all was calm and peaceful again. Since my Greek friends weren't allowed to visit the Northern Turkish part of the country, they had brought me to the demarcation line, which still existed; I walked across the line and rented a car on the Turkish side. Her account of what happened during the frightful days when the country became divided is absolutely fascinating.In a way some parts of the paradise are still there,"... But the Kyrenia Castle survived.""Once again, after thousands of years of foreign invasions...."It was awesome to find out that during her time in Europe Susan also visited my hometown Vienna, where she not only saw the famous lippizaners but also watched "Arsenic and Old Lace" with David Cameron.For me it was a cool read because I know so many of the locations well, since I grew up in this region of the world. It was wonderful to read about them as the backdrop for Susan's transformation into the artist she was meant to be. Susan is one hell of a gutsy woman, who did not even hesitate to ask Elvis, if he was "the real Elvis". Indeed, she also saw the `real' Elvis driving an old beat-up car on an LA freeway. because he did not want to be recognized. Susan still did.Gisela Hausmann, author & blogger

  • S.L. Hoyte
    2018-12-01 02:21

    Reviewed for Reader Views“The Lullaby Illusion: A Journey of Awakening” by Susan Joyce is a memoir covering a twelve-year period of her life. During this time Joyce loses a child during child-birth, survives a coup on the island of Cyprus, discovers her husband may not be who he says he is, and is rescued from a ship that gets caught on a coral reef during Monsoon season on the Indian Ocean. Joyce has a great spiritual awareness and is very in-tune with her inner self. She has vivid down-to-the-last-detail type dreams, and is able to remember them precisely and decipher their meanings as they relate to her life and her life experiences. She is a strong woman who has used her experiences and dreams for continued personal development and self –discovery. She could easily have let her experiences hold her back and trap her into a life of “settling”, yet experience after experience she inspired me with her positivity, openness and willingness to learn and grow.That being said, there were several things that kept me from “loving” this book. First and foremost was the writing style. Most of the book was dialogue and I didn’t have a clue what was going on until about the fourth chapter, when we got some narrative and a little background information. I typically don’t mind dialogue but I need some information in-between conversations. I found a lot of the conversations to be back and forth choppy chit-chat that were irrelevant to the story, i.e. page 149, “She’s got it tough,” someone said. Someone said? Why did we need that comment from someone? I also didn’t feel like the characters were well-developed so I had a hard time remembering who Joyce was talking to and how that person was relevant to the story. I spent a good deal of time turning back pages to find information on people that wasn’t always there. Of course, being under-developed was a good thing in the case of Charles, Joyce’s first husband – what a jerk! I heard as much about him as I wanted to! In summary, I have a great deal of admiration for Joyce in how she not only survived, but prospered during the tribulations of her life. She has an amazing story to tell and I just think a different style of writing would have done the telling of it more justice.

  • Charline Ratcliff
    2018-11-16 01:58

    I've just finished reading “The Lullaby Illusion” by author Susan Joyce, and let me just say that it was a fantastic read. “The Lullaby Illusion” is a factual look back at the author’s amazing journey through her younger life.In “The Lullaby Illusion” we, the reader, begin our journey in the year 2008. Susan has been informed that her ex-husband, Charles, has just passed away. Due to her non-favorable, past experiences with him, this is a rather surreal moment for her. Unsure of how to process this news; surprised at how it affects her even after so many years, she calls a friend so she can talk it out.From this starting point we begin to backtrack through Susan’s life and we discover how she initially met Charles. From there we continue forward (in the past) and we read about their travels together, Susan’s attempts to have children, her life in the paradise that was Cyprus and how that life collapsed with the bloody coup of 1974.I don’t want to provide too much of the book’s details in my review, but this is one title that’s definitely well worth the read. Joyce shares her life experiences with ease and stylish panache. And as an aside, I was happy to learn that the child (who yearned to experience the world firsthand) actually had the chance to do so. Susan’s journey was not all fun and games - hardships arose, but she seemed to manage them with dignity, gracefulness and help from friends who, over the many years, became family.

  • Jill Stoking
    2018-11-17 02:08

    I found this an absorbing read on many levels. This memoir of Susan’s life, about which she writes so eloquently, was so different, diverse and alien to my own life experiences and held beliefs that I was transported. I saw, through Susan’s eyes, what it was like to have a husband she couldn’t depend on. or trust. A husband who was absent as she went through the heartbreak of miscarrying her babies and who abandoned her when the bullets were literally whistling over her head from both sides, as Susan was trapped out in the open, in the middle of a war zone, when Cyprus was invaded by Turkish forcesWe follow Susan through her life during the seventies and eighties. A life without her husband but a life she makes her own, forging a career as an accomplished artist in numerous mediums. Susan immerses herself in the culture of Germany during the years when free love was the accepted way of life and HIV/Aids was a death sentence.Susan Joyce paints a vivid picture, through narrative and dialogue, of her life, loves and her own unique spiritual experiences through this snapshot in time.I recommend ‘Lullaby Illusion’ not just because it’s a great read but also because it’s a thought provoking insight into these iconic years. After all there is still no cure for HIV and Cyprus remains a country divided.

  • Susan
    2018-11-24 23:25

    I read reviews on this book so decided I had to read it. The author has such an idyllic life and visits many country's following her husband and his jobs. Then when everything is going so wonderful in Cyprus the unthinkable happens--war between the Greeks and the Turks battling for the island. If you know your history you know that Turkey owns half the island and Greece owns the other half and there are constant problems with this. We have all seen pictures of how lovely the Greek islands are but--this authors world was shattered when she was alone on Cyprus when the war started--it is amazing how this happened to her--not once but twice. Thank heavens for friends and the authors strong will to get thru all this. My husband was on an adjoining island at the time and when I told him some of the things in this book he embellished on it and I heard the story thru his words that I just read and he hasn't read the book. Then we get to find out has she carries on with her life -- how does she get off Cyprus and what does she do next. This is such a fantastic read you won't be able to put it down

  • Karen
    2018-12-11 04:17

    As I currently live on the island of Cyprus, I was initially drawn to this book by the promise of its account of the Turkish invasion of the island in 1974.Many of the local people have shared with me their accounts of those tumultuous times; it would be interesting to read the author's experiences as through the eyes of an American living in Northern Cyprus at that time. Susan relates the terrifying trauma of fleeing her home along with friends of various nationalities, of hiding in the mountains and being caught in crossfire. Her life shattered by events, she is forced to abandon the island and people she loves and begin anew.Meanwhile, Susan is suspicious of her husband's covert actions and trips overseas; who is he really? She despairs in his coldness towards her struggle to produce a child and writes of her gradual realisation that by following true passions her life purpose would reveal itself elsewhere.The book turned out to be much more than an escape from a war zone; Susan Joyce engages in an exploration of dreams, of fulfilling one's destiny and seeking life's path to true happiness.